Used 1998 Dodge Durango

1998 Dodge Durango
List price range
1998 Dodge Durango

Pros

  • Aggressive Dodge styling, large interior, V8 power, competitive price.

Cons

  • Nine cupholders, no refrigerator

Used 1998 Dodge Durango for Sale

Dodge Durango 1998 SLT 4dr SUV 4WD
264,054 miles
Used 1998
Dodge Durango
SLT
(2)
Bob Wade Subaru
87.4 mi away
ListNot Listed
View Details

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Edmunds' Expert Review

vehicle overview

Remember the Ramcharger? Neither do we, with the help of the Dodge Durango. Based on the Dakota platform, the Durango is Dodge's latest attempt at a sport-utility vehicle. And from the looks of things, the Dodge boys have done their homework.

Competing directly with the sales king Ford Explorer is no easy task. But the Durango can seat three more passengers than the Explorer. With its more powerful engine, it can tow more weight. It has better ground clearance. More cargo capacity. Bigger. Stronger. Faster. Less expensive. Sounds like a winning formula.

The Durango is larger than anything else in its class, which explains the expansive interior. Yet it's smaller than the Chevrolet Tahoe or Ford Expedition, so we can't call it full-sized. But the niche is filled. Need more room than an Explorer, Blazer or Cherokee? Don't want to fork over the price of an Expedition? Take a good look at the Dodge Durango; it's the only option.

Although currently available only as a four-wheel drive, a two-wheel drive model is in the works for next year, meaning that even more buyers are soon likely to defect from the competition's ranks. With fresh new styling, superior versatility, and an attractive price, the newest Dodge makes a statement all its own. It says, "Buy me."

1998 Highlights

As the most recent addition to the Dodge truck lineup, the Durango makes quite an entry. Offering the most cargo space in its class, along with eight-passenger seating and three-and-a-half tons of towing capacity, the Durango is the most versatile sport-utility on the market.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 1998 Dodge Durango.

Overall Consumer Rating

Most helpful consumer reviews

Adored this car
AEpixie7,08/14/2010
My parents purchased this car when I was in middle school, and passed it down to me as my first car. We live in an area of heavy snow at times, and I swear this car has gotten me through 2 to 3 foot snow drifts without a problem. It now has 210,000 miles on it, has been in 2 wrecks, but it still runs EXTREMELY well. Very reliable and great in extreme weather. I will sincerely miss it when the time comes.
Had some trouble but love the vehicle
Caliebear22,01/09/2009
I have had to replace the front differential, tires (regular maintenance). I changed the oil to synthetic, now we are having trouble with ball joints. Gas mileage is OK. I get about 15mpg and I have the 3.18 v8 best engine to get. In town I get 11-13mpg. I overall love this car and it did wonders on a slippery slope while having a trailer attached and the brakes are wonderful. I would recommend buying this vehicle. I do have tranny problems. It doesn't like 2nd gear and I have the auto.
The good and the bad.
cjp,02/26/2002
Lots of problems with the CV Joints. To check the computer on the vehicle took five minutes, cost $86. The rotors warped in 10k, just freeway driving. Most disappointing thing about my Dodge is the Dealerships I have to deal with to get minor repairs or just regular services. 4 wheel system whether it is in "Full Time" or "Part Time" is bad in winter snow, easy to spin out on this truck.
221000 miles on her same motor and tranny
david,10/28/2015
I got my 1998 dodge Durango 5.2 L at 20,000 miles on it first it was the only car me and the wife had so we had to be really nice to it then we raised six kids with it then we got a expedition el and the Durango had 100,000 miles at this time it became all mine I have a very heavy foot I treated it like a hot rod now for four years and 120,000 miles and still has the same engine,tranny,rear end,transfer case and front end and POWER that it did the day I got it takes snow rain mud very well I would never get rid of her I have money set aside just for her if anything ever did go wrong she WILL be fixed we have five cars and this is my go to ride for work or play the only bad thing is with me is I replace tires a lot (heavy foot)
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Features & Specs

MPG
N/A city / N/A hwy
Seats 0
4-speed automatic
Gas
N/A
MPG
N/A city / N/A hwy
Seats 0
4-speed automatic
Gas
N/A
See all Used 1998 Dodge Durango features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver2 / 5
    Passenger3 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    DriverNot Rated
    PassengerNot Rated
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    RolloverNot Rated
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    Acceptable

More about the 1998 Dodge Durango
More About This Model

This year, Dodge has finally decided to give Ford a run for its money. The ever-popular Explorer has been selling better than some carmakers' entire lineups, and it was beginning to make us wonder if anyone would ever step up to challenge Ford’s sport-utility sales crown. True, Chrysler tried to sic Jeep on them by introducing the Grand Cherokee, but even with a bigger engine and car-like unibody construction, the big Jeep just couldn’t keep up.

Enter Dodge. Coming from a company that sells more trucks than cars, it’s no surprise that the Durango is derived from a truck platform: namely, the Dakota, from which it takes 80% of its parts. While everybody else has entered the SUV market with either a badge-engineered luxo-ute or a tiny car-based utility wagon, Dodge decided to mold its already popular Dakota into a full-fledged sport-utility vehicle, all the while keeping the classic power-truck Dodge Ram styling intact.

Steering feedback is excellent for a truck this size. The relatively small steering wheel telegraphs the road surface to the driver without feeling overly harsh. Through a turn, the balanced wheel cooperates easily, without rigidly tugging itself back to center yet never feeling loose. A leather steering wheel cover would have been a welcome option, though, because during our winter road test, that rubbery wheel rim froze like a giant teething ring.

The big 5.9-liter engine on our test truck played its part as if it were born to power a muscle car. Capable of 245 horsepower and 335 ft-lbs. of torque, the Magnum V-8 helps the Durango tow up to 7,000 lbs. Unladen, however, performance was rubber-smokingly abrupt. In fact, at every takeoff, whether climbing or descending a hill, we were able to arouse an enthusiastic squeal from the rear tires, often with enough torque left over to make some noise during the one-two shift. Not bad for a sport-ute. Not bad for a Ford Mustang, either. And equipped with the 5.9-liter V-8, the Durango goes from 0-60 in just over eight seconds.

Slowing down is another matter for the 4,736-lb. heavyweight. We were unable to measure exact distances, but stopping is nothing to scream about, unless you’re one of the 31x10.50R15LT Goodyear Wrangler RT/S tires. The tires would regularly emit sharp yelps of pain, though the truck was equipped with rear-wheel ABS.

The four-speed automatic transmission shifts smoothly, and it’s not afraid to stay in a higher gear and simply garner more torque rather than resort to an abrupt downshift. We never caught the tranny searching for the proper gear. And the ride is something else to boast about. Compliant and smooth, the Durango’s frame is actually three times stiffer than its Dakota 4x4 sibling. And compared to the Mitsubishi Montero Sport, advertising for which brags a great deal about its smooth ride, the Durango is a luxury car.

Durango offers an excellent view of the road, the sidewalks and the traffic behind. Positioning the driver near the windshield, yet high enough above the hood to provide a commanding view of the countryside, the Durango instills confidence without isolating the driver from his or her surroundings.

Medicine cabinet-sized mirrors aid views to the side, but they are not the most aerodynamic feature and add plenty of wind noise at highway speeds. As a bonus, however, they could be used as an S.O.S. signal to aircraft should you ever run out of gas in the middle of the desert.

Running out of gas probably won’t occur because of the truck’s 25-gallon capacity fuel tank. However, after burning only 20 gallons, the red needle rested on "E". Maybe that’s just to make sure you fill up often; the truck made it only 263 miles. EPA mileage estimates say that our test vehicle was capable of getting between 12 and 17 mpg. Our average mileage was a low 13.1, and that included mostly highway travel. Don’t expect to save the planet while driving this sport-utility.

Headroom is adequate even for abnormally tall men, and there are no awkwardly-designed dash pieces to intrude on leg space. The roofline swoops upward two inches just behind the front seats, so even the rear ceiling-mounted climate controls and vents do not take up any noticeable space. The second row of seats is as comfortable to sit in as the first, with an appreciable amount of legroom even with the front seats all the way back. The third row, however, is adequate only for small people. Getting back there is no problem, since the second row folds out of the way, but the thin seat padding would cause some pain during extended use.

The second row seats fold down flat, or they can tumble into a small package for better storage and easier rear-seat entry. The rear seat cushion slides forward, filling a space on the floor, and the rear seats can then fold flat, creating a maximum 88 cubic feet of cargo space. I’ve pitched smaller tents.

The Durango boasts an amazing nine cupholders, a number which seems to be in direct competition with most of today’s minivans. Two are built-in beside the rear seats, two are in the second row’s center armrest, two are near the floor in front of the second row seats, and three are up front between driver and passenger. And the triple-designed front cupholders include one big enough to hold a movie-sized container of popcorn. Obviously, the Durango was built with Americans in mind.

Noise, vibration and harshness are pleasantly subdued for something so truck-like, but you won’t mistake the Durango for a passenger car. Wind noise comes from all around, as in any truck, and the intrusive roar of the tires is due to their sheer size. Engine noise, surprisingly, is not worth mentioning, except for a breathy growl upon cold startups. Then again, we all sound a little hoarse in the morning.

All in all, the Durango is a compact sport ute that feels much larger inside than the exterior would lead you to believe. It’s not much taller than a minivan, but what minivan offers a 5.9-liter V-8? Or potential off-road prowess? And unlike any other SUV in this class, the Durango can hold up to eight people. It’s like Dr. David Banner from the Incredible Hulk: mild mannered and unassuming, but powered by a raging fury beneath the surface. Bulging sheetmetal, while probably not the result of gamma radiation, is indicative of tasteful styling, and the Dodge Durango is something Chrysler Corporation can be proud of. Not strictly a family-hauler, and not made just for boulder-bashing…the Durango is capable of anything.

Used 1998 Dodge Durango Overview

The Used 1998 Dodge Durango is offered in the following submodels: Durango SUV. Available styles include 4dr SUV 4WD, and SLT 4dr SUV 4WD.

What's a good price on a Used 1998 Dodge Durango?

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Should I lease or buy a 1998 Dodge Durango?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

Check out Dodge lease specials
Check out Dodge Durango lease specials